Soft skills: know what they are and how to identify them in the selection process

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Soft skills: know what they are and how to identify them in the selection process

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Professional training and technical skills have, for a long time, dictated disputes over some of the most coveted professional opportunities on the market. But, with the popularization of soft skills, this has changed significantly.

Now, the behavioral profile of candidates can be even more relevant to the decision making of recruiters. Something that allows an effective alignment with the company culture, expectations for the position and long-term considerations for the development of that same professional.

Let's see, then, what to know about soft skills to identify them in your next selection processes? Just continue reading this post!

What are soft skills?

Skills related to an individual's behavior are known as soft skills. Therefore, those skills that can be improved through self-knowledge, or through constant feedback. Soft skills have nothing to do with the skills acquired in technical courses or academic training.

A good example of this type of competence is emotional intelligence, which usually represents a thoughtful, logical and balanced professional profile.

Furthermore, in times when companies are more concerned with this alignment of profiles – there is even a term for that: fit cultural -, soft skills are of great importance for the HR sector to know, in advance, which of these skills must be deeply observed.

What are the differences between soft skills and hard skills?

At hard skills these are the skills that we have already mentioned briefly, and that for a long time were among the priorities of recruiters before candidates for an opportunity in the company. Some examples:

  • specializations (such as a course on a particular type of software);
  • academic training;
  • fluency in languages;
  • technical courses.

Among other skills that are considered necessary to fill a vacancy.

In its turn, soft skills can be strengthened through creativity or a sense of organization, this can distinguish two candidates who have the same hard skills, but who have different behavioral skills.

And that does not mean that professionals have to live with the same soft skills indefinitely. Just like any other skill, they can be learned, developed and improved.

No wonder, recruiters should – and are paying – pay more attention to these behavioral skills. They are able to add a lot to the work environment and also in carrying out everyday tasks.

However, it is not the only issue to be highlighted. In a complementary way, it is possible to enrich your selection process even more, based on the best market practices. And if you’re interested in that, specifically, take the time to check out our post on the major trends in recruitment for the year 2021!

What are the soft skills most desired by recruiters?

If, on the one hand, we already understand what soft skills are, we still need to understand what they can bring to the company.

Conflict resolution, for example, is a fundamental skill for maintaining a safe, comfortable environment for all employees and always harmonious. Just as the aforementioned creativity allows for new solutions for old (and new) situations.

How about we see then, what are the soft skills that your recruitment and selection can they keep an eye on future selection processes and further improve assertiveness in their hiring?

Effective communication

The power of good communication is undeniable, regardless of the media used.

Professionals who are able to adapt to different means of communication, have even more advantage to excel in the job market. From digital platforms to face-to-face negotiations, communication is present in every daily task – and not only because of the ability to speak to the public and suppliers, but also because of knowing how to dialogue with co-workers.

For this, this type of soft skill allows for richer interactions and with high power of communication, whether for listening or expressing oneself.

Creativity

As we said, creativity is the traditional “thinking outside the box”. But this soft skill goes further, positioning itself as a means of seeing the world in different ways.

For that, creativity must be constantly nurtured by experiences, interest in all kinds of subjects and also in varied activities. Each of them can be a little extra in your repertoire, allowing the connection of different ideas that escape the commonplace.

And make no mistake: this is one of the soft skills that are most required of modern professionals. After all, technology has brought ample possibilities of resolution for the most diverse demands. And with an extra touch of creativity, the results can generate the long-awaited competitive advantage for the company.

Resilience

Companies are not looking for professionals who give up or become discouraged in the face of the first or a great frustration. On the contrary: just as in personal life, resilience is a way to shake off dust, learn from setbacks and obstacles, and do better at the next opportunity.

This includes abandoning the “fear of making mistakes”. Learning will come in the context of an attempt. If people don't take a risk, take responsibility or try again, how will they know if their ideas would be really efficient or would need little adjustment to make a difference?

It is worthwhile, however, to reflect on the meaning of resilience. It is not a matter of recklessness, but of decisions made based on a lot of planning and the awareness that the obstacles along the way exist, but they serve as fuel for your own development.

Empathy

Talking about soft skills nowadays goes directly to the concept of empathy. And that goes for any professional position and at all hierarchical levels.

After all, this ability allows people to put themselves in the shoes of others. And realize how important it is to understand the difficulties that coworkers are facing, to see the world as other people do and also to prioritize collective growth, not just individual growth.

Therefore, empathetic people are excellent acquisitions for companies, so that the work environment is even more collaborative and less conflicting.

Leadership

THE leadership it is a fundamental element for any recruiter to pay attention to. After all, it is through this characteristic that we can observe a good professional who already collects a series of soft skills, such as:

  • communicative ability;
  • creative thinking;
  • empathy;
  • resilience.

Among other skills that we will still discuss, in the following topics.

VIt also highlights that leadership is not something inherent to people – although many of them carry this characteristic naturally. With training and efficient planning, the company's HR is able to train more and more employees with these Skills and, thus, obtain a more and more efficient workforce.

ethic

Difficult to be taught, but fundamental in the corporate aspect as well as in personal matters, ethics is a skill that unites several characteristics, such as influence, morals, empathy, responsibility, conscience and collaboration, others enter.

Although it is challenging to be transmitted and exercised, ethics can be part of the company's culture, and it can also be taught through training conducted by the HR sector. As a result, an environment less affected by the toxicity of relationships, selfishness and also by unfair competitiveness is created. In other words: ethics is a skill that makes up a fair and harmonious work environment in every way.

Team work

In the sum of the soft skills we have mentioned so far, teamwork is a competence that comes naturally. Even so, it is worth reinforcing, considering that its exercise also reduces any relationship problems and problematic individualisms for the teams.

In this sense, it is important to keep in mind the work of the manager in this process, which cannot privilege individual employees, but thinking about collective well-being at all times. Something that, as a consequence, must be passed on to employees.

Flexibility

It may seem subjective, but flexibility is one of the most important soft skills. Even more in a time when dynamism, accelerated by new technologies, boosted the need for people to be flexible with the most diverse situations.

Companies expect their employees to be able to adapt, having the ability to absorb the use of new solutions, techniques or even relate to different professional profiles.

Emotional intelligence

To finish our list of soft skills, there is no way to forget about emotional intelligence, which consists of the ability to manage emotions. With this, people learn better how they act and react to the most varied situations in a healthy, assertive manner and without letting their feelings take control of their decisions.

In this way, soft skills can indeed help in the development of the company, and also of each professional individually. And, as we have seen, this only benefits the results of the organization and society as a whole.

It is also worth mentioning that we have many tips constantly posted on our social networks and that can contribute to the growth of your company in a sustainable manner. To learn more about it, like our page on Facebook, and also follow us on Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn to stay on top of all our news at first hand!

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